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  1. now02.png
    Preserving Our Memories
    for the Future

    A Webinar with the South Side Home Movie Project
    + Orientation to New Online Tagging Tools

    Hosted by the Chicago Public Library
    6:30pm, Wednesday, March 29, 2023

    Register here before 3pm for the Zoom link
    Home movies capture a range of details about everyday neighborhood life in Chicago, from fashion to food to how people walk down the street. During moments of social change, they also show historic events from a unique perspective, revealing what it was like to watch Myrlie Evers receive a posthumous award for her husband Medgar in Grant Park in 1963, or to visit the Wall of Respect in Grand Boulevard in 1968.

    The South Side Home Movie Project has been collecting and preserving home movies from Chicago’s South Side neighborhoods since 2005, and now holds over 700 of these rare glimpses of South Side life in their local film archive. For Women’s History Month, join the SSHMP team in partnership with Chicago Public Library for a virtual guided tour of the project, featuring home movies with women both behind and in front of the camera, from the 1920s-1980s.

    SPECIAL NOTE: This session will also debut SSHMP’s new Community Tagging Tools, which let you add your own memories to the home movie database and identify the people, places and events you recognize. For the first time, Chicagoans from across the city are invited to try out this custom crowd-sourcing interface so that your stories become part of SSHMP’s virtual archive. Join us for a live demonstration and hands-on orientation to this new way to contribute your memories to Chicago’s history. 

    How to Attend
    This event takes place on Zoom; click here to register by 3:00 pm Weds, 3/29/23. Only one registration per household is needed. You’ll receive an email link to the secure Zoom link before the event. Automatic transcription is included in all CPL events using Zoom.

    Image: Dr. Helen Nash filming at Niagara Falls, 1959, from the Dr. Helen Nash Collection
  2. now11.png

    ‘Is That Black Enough for You?!?’ Review: Elvis Mitchell’s Intoxicating Deep Dive into the Black Cinema Revolution of the ’70s

    A critic's movie-love documentary artfully celebrates and deconstructs the decade when African-American audiences, for the first time, could see themselves onscreen.

    By Owen Gleiberman


    In “Is That Black Enough for You?!?,” Elvis Mitchell’s highly pleasurable and eye-opening movie-love documentary about the American Black cinema revolution of the late ’60s and ’70s, Billy Dee Williams, now 85 but still spry, tells a funny story about what it was like to play Louis McKay, the dapper love object and would-be savior of Billie Holiday in “Lady Sings the Blues.”

    The year was 1972, and African-American audiences had rarely (if ever) been given the chance to gawk at a movie star of color who was not just this sexy but this showcased for his sexiness. Louis was like Clark Gable with a dash of Marvin Gaye; when he was on that promenade stairway, Williams says, with a chuckle, that he just about fell in love with himself. That’s how unprecedented the whole thing was. The actor recalls how the lighting was fussed over (we see a shot in which Louis appears bathed in an old-movie glow), and how unreal that was to him on the set. At the time, Black actors didn’t get lighting like that. But Black audiences drank it in with a better-late-than-never swoon, even as they knew that this was a representation they’d been denied for more than half a century.


    “Is That Black Enough for You?!?” tells the story of Black film during a singularly creative and unprecedented time — the decade from 1968 to 1978, when Black actors, Black stories, and Black talent behind the camera exploded, in Hollywood and in the adjoining universe of independent film. The actors who came to the fore during this period are legendary: James Earl Jones, Cicely Tyson, Ossie Davis, Diana Ross, Pam Grier, Jim Brown, Tamara Dobson, Max Julien, and many more. The directors, like Gordon Parks and Melvin Van Peebles, were wily and paradigmatic game-changers. And the way that Black talent began to flow through a vast array of forms and genres — action movies, historical dramas, film noirs, musicals, close-to-the-bone indie love stories — made the Black film movement a parallel of the New Hollywood, with new voices overthrowing old strictures.

    Mitchell, who wrote, directed, and narrates the film, is a veteran critic who has a unique, at times almost musical ability to nail a film’s unconscious essence. “Is That Black Enough for You?!?” is subtitled “How one decade changed the movies (and me),” and it’s very much Mitchell’s statement about what the rise of Black cinema meant to him, as a Black moviegoer born into a world where movies were still an engine of racial division. His pithy evocation of each movie — the history, the fantasy, the meaning — turns the documentary into a film fanatic’s diary that never tries to separate the importance of these movies from how each of them made him feel. As a critic-turned-filmmaker, Mitchell puts his soul right out there. His conceit is that the very existence of these movies was life-changing, because African-American moviegoers, at long last, had the catharsis of a big-screen mirror. For the first time, they could see themselves onscreen — not degraded or reductive images of themselves, but a reflection of who they were.  


    The beauty of the documentary is that Mitchell invites the audience to share in the transformational quality — the life force — that he experienced in Black cinema. “My grandmother,” recalls Mitchell, “told me that movies changed the way she dreamed.” That’s as perfect a summation of the power of movies as I’ve ever heard. Movies change our dreams; they change us. But who, in that formulation, gets to be the “us”?

    From the start of the 20th century, white audiences could go to the movies and see themselves. Mitchell, born in 1958, grew up in the Detroit area, where he saw the tumult of the inner-city riot/insurrections of the ’60s, but where he also went to the movies to discover who he was and who he wanted to be. Early on, he takes us back to the studio-system days, where Black actors were reduced to playing hideous racist caricatures. His survey of those images — the servility of Stepin Fetchit, the odd-child-out surrealism of Buckwheat, the shocking minstrel moments that could creep into even a movie by Hitchcock — is searing, not only because of the violence of the racism that defined those roles, but because part of the racism lay in what was not being depicted: Black people in their humanity.

    We know that Sidney Poitier was the actor who tore down that wall. But Mitchell, while paying due homage to Poitier’s electric intensity, focuses on another Black actor of the period — the outrageously gifted and charismatic Harry Belafonte, the Calypso singer who’d become a screen actor, appearing opposite Dorothy Dandridge in films like “Carmen Jones” (1954), but who abandoned the movies after the remarkable but mostly ignored film noir “Odds Against Tomorrow” (1959), because he couldn’t accept the roles that he was being offered. He didn’t want to be a compromised, patronized, back-of-the-bus movie star; he wanted the whole thing or nothing. Mitchell presents Belafonte as a great actor who became, for a decade, a kind of vanished specter of the star he might have been in a better world.

    And then, even with those odds against tomorrow, that world began to come into being.

    If you say a phrase like “the Black films of the ’70s,” the first thing that will pop into a lot of people’s heads is the word Blaxploitation. But apart from the reductive and problematic quality of that word, it simply doesn’t do justice to the astonishing range of movies that made up the Black film renaissance. Many, though far from all of them, were written and directed by white filmmakers, yet even as whites continued to commandeer the means of production, these movies became an authentic showcase for the Black experience through the existential expressiveness of the Black actors who starred in them. What those actors had, according to Mitchell, was “the self-possession that would become the core of Black film,” a quality that “created a warrior class where there hadn’t been one before.”

    Liberating the films from their too-easy-to-slot-in categories, Mitchell feeds on the eclectic cornucopia of what a “Black movie,” starting in the late ’60s, could be. He explores the emotional transcendence of “Sounder” (1972). The exhilarating, dread-soaked hustler authenticity of “Super Fly” (1972). The performance of Rupert Crosse, the first Black actor to be Oscar-nominated for best supporting actor, in “The Reivers” (1969), where he sparred teasingly with Steve McQueen in a way that subverted racial power dynamics. The conspiratorial paranoia of “Three the Hard Way” (1974), about a serum dumped into the water in Black cities, which the teenage Mitchell thought was funny until his father told him about the Tuskegee Experiment. The jocular knowingness of “Cotton Comes to Harlem” (1971), with its wryly repeated catch phrase “Is that black enough for you?”

    And then there’s the deliverance of the opening credits of “Shaft” (1971), a vérité epiphany in which the camera, accompanied by the snaky imperiousness of Isaac Hayes’s theme song, didn’t just follow Richard Roundtree as he walked through Times Square but worshipped him. The rebel-blues-meets-burn-baby-burn mythology of “Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song” (1971). The “early, all-out glam shower” that was “Lady Sings the Blues.” The way Duane Jones, playing the Black hero of “Night of the Living Dead” (1968), goes through the entire movie without his race being mentioned — and then, after saving the white people, gets paid back by being gunned down. The jaunty self-mockery of Poitier in “Uptown Saturday Night” (1974). The melancholy of William Marshall in “Blacula” (1972). The cowboy effrontery — and haunting commercial failure — of “Buck and the Preacher” (1972). And the clandestine complexity of “Coffy” (1973), in which Pam Grier played a woman bent on vengeance whose every lethal move is weighed down by the gravity of responsibility that’s tearing her in several directions.

    “Is That Black Enough for You?!?” is built in a formally simple yet elegant kaleidoscopic way, examining one movie after another but looking at each through a different lens. Here’s how Ron O’Neal jumped a chain-link fence in “Super Fly” and why it mattered, here’s Diahann Carroll’s “core of calm” in “Claudine” (1974), here’s why “The Wiz” (1978), which should have been a crowning achievement of the Black film renaissance, turned out to be its swan song. And Mitchell never stops weaving the past — Hollywood’s and his own — into the narrative, so that we see how this era was anticipated by the career of Oscar Micheaux (who from 1919 to 1948 made 44 features), and how Isaac Hayes’ performance at the 1972 Academy Awards was, for Mitchell, as profound and transporting as any of the films he talks about.


    Elvis Mitchell celebrates the moment when Black people, for the first time in movie history, had a popular culture of heroes to respond to. Which gave life, of course, to the heroism within themselves. But even as Hollywood, for the first half of the century, was defined as a place of cinematic apartheid, Mitchell argues against the glib and easy liberal separatism that would sanctify Black cinema — or Black moviegoing — as a hermetic experience. He interviews a host of Black artists, like Belafonte and Laurence Fishburne and Whoopi Goldberg and Samuel L. Jackson and the director Charles Burnett, many of whom testify to the mythology they embraced in old Westerns. They felt discriminated against but not shut out; those “white” movies were for them as well.

    And Mitchell offers a head-spinning insight when he talks about the place in the larger movie cosmos that Black cinema came to occupy. During the ’70s, the American hero had gone underground, replaced by the disaffected antihero. Mitchell makes the case that Black cinema brought the hero back. “Audiences of all races came to see these movies,” he says, “because they could feel the adrenaline in the actors.” He also argues that the way Black filmmakers interwove the aesthetics of movies and pop music, down to the bold marketing idea of releasing a soundtrack prior to the movie (a tactic Van Peebles innovated with “Sweetback,” and was then repeated with such seismic soundtracks as Curtis Mayfield’s music for “Super Fly”), paved the way for the fusion of those two industries. “Saturday Night Fever,” in Mitchell’s view, was one culmination of the Black cinema renaissance, with John Travolta appropriating Black nihilistic swagger and the movie selling itself in the spirit of Black movie/music synergy. The ultimate message of “Is That Black Enough for You?!?” is that Black cinema, for all the racism of Hollywood (and America), was never separate from the cinema that wasn’t Black. How could it be? They shared the same dream space.







    Blackwood introduction



    Carib Gold



    South Side Home Movie Project


    Yemenyah+ Storm and Rain the movie


    Why merit doesn't work and the need for communal zones of opportunity in media


    BLACKWOOD discussions



  3. As a writer in a fiscal capitalistic environment, I am, like all other writers, two thing. I am a literary artist plus a commercial artist. 

    As a literary artist, I am complete. I create literature that I love, that comes from my soul. I make public or keep private what I choose from my creations. 

    As a commercial artist, I am learning. The selling or buying of art involves factors outside creativity or art. Some of said factors are heritage or culture or financial quality. 

    In the modern, meaning current, United States of America a culture made in response to historic heritages in said community has become potent in the media industry. In common history of the USA, the historic heritage, media was over ninety nine percent populated by humans who are male-person born with a penis+heterosexual-fornicate with someone who is born with the opposite sexual organ no hermaphrodites+christian-various denominations+white-phenotypical range+european ancestry. Humans who are not in the stated racial group , composed of additives, were less than one percent present in media across all activities. OVer time for various reasons, the cold war desire of the white power of the USA to be accepted by the larger human populace outside the usa over the ussr being the largest one, media in the USA changed at the impetus from its white owners. But , as ever larger money in the USA started being earned by more than just white christian male heterosexuals of european descent, the desire to impose a new media paradigm grew and grew. Said paradigm was and is aided by the growing financial clout of countries outside the USA that are mostly populated by non european or non white or non christian or maybe even mostly female humans. 

    But what is the culture? 

    The culture brewed state two position. Panracial integration is mandatory. Those in the stated group <white/male/christian/hetero/european ancestry> are blockaded from depicting those who are not while those who are not can depict those who are <white/male/christian/hetero/european ancestry>. 

    Why did I make this post?

    Not for anything I said prior. Everything I said prior was or is common knowledge or should or shall be common knowledge.

    I made this post to state a dysfunction in said culture.

    It mirrors the same dysfunction in Brown vs Board of Education. 

    Can human beings of different races, any racial category, coexist peacefully or functionally? the answer is a simple, historically proven, yes. Multiracial bodies, any racial category, are common throughout humanity.

    But, history proves something else. Humans beings can also thrive segregated from each other. Peaceful/functional/positive monoracial bodies, any racial category, are common throughout humanity. 

    The question in media is? If Valinor doesn't have any Black people , are Black people harmed/injured/insulted? The answer is a simple no. 

    The tales of Anansi don't include any whites or europeans. Grimms fairy tales don't include any blacks or africans. Neither story collection is lessened by their reality. Neither story requires unrepresented races to be forced through new characters or stories. 

    The answer isn't how to push black students into a white students only school to get the resources of the white school to be accessed by black students. The answer is to increase the resources of the black students only school to be at least equal to the white students only school. 

    Was media in the USA an industry that blockaded those who were not male+white+european ancestry+christian+heterosexual? yes. 

    But, is the wisest response to that past a modernity where said media is forced by external powers to share its resources OR where media that is not owned by male/+white+european ancestry+christian+heterosexual people have greater resources? 

    As I said in years past, why do Black people not have their own film awards? or moreover, why do Black people not emphasize their own film awards? Miss Juneteenth has began decades ago, but Black women in miss america is still a symbol. Is the goal to have white side black women or is the goal that black women have their own pageants just like white women? 

    A thought experiment, if every Black college student in the USA never went to any college but a historical black college or university <HBCU>, what will today's collegiate landscape look like? will it be bad in your mind?  I argue that Harvard+ Yale +MIT+ Stanford will not be lessened or destroyed or evil if they didn't have black students. In parallel I argue that HBCU's lost their momentum or positive possibility having to compete with the resources of more fiscally potent schools. 

    Is segregation evil? Is integration good? I argue, the USA or the british colonies preceding it has always been integrated while never segregated. From the first whites of Europe appearing before Native Americans who sadly didn't know what horrors these immigrants will bring to them through white slavemasters houses built on black families bodies or reservations the native americans left alive are forced to live in to NYC today in all of its christian babel likeness, integration has always been in the USA. Segregation has never been now at any time in the USA. 

    The key is how are the people integrating. Usually it is one master while the others slave or one alive with the others dead. In modernity, one is in power, while the others are not as powerful. 

    But, the image of power is always most dangerous, when it is a lie. The NAzi's saying they hate everyone else wasn't a lie. It was negative but not a lie. And the USA media lives with lies. We are all equal, we are all a family, a set of loving ones, in the USA... but then we are not. Your white cousin can't portray you, but you can portray them ala Hamilton stage play by mirande side Angelina Jolie playing Mariane van Neyenhoff. Black people of fiscal wealth say they want black unity against white oppression in the usa but  most of them finance relatives or friends to go to non Historical black colleges or universities. Lies are dangerous. And media promoting lies leads to greater problems. 

    In the art world, this means we artists have financial limitations on our craft based on the messages in our work. We artists always have, and always will I think. But, in the USA it is more narrow than in the past, even with a globally connected media. 


    Discussions of the Blackwood LINK


    Post SCript: I will love to write a story about Harad in the lord of the rings universe or Sothoryos in the Song of Ice and Fire universe. The writers to either of the mentioned worlds did include black people, asian people, all people in truth, but they only focused on writing about one part. They didn't have to create a USA in their story. 



    1. Show previous comments  1 more
    2. richardmurray


      FAT EXCUSE from Maher


    3. Troy


      Fat acceptance to fat celebration is not really ne.  It has been around for a long time -- perhaps longer in the Black community. The idea that you can be obese and healthy, which we have accepted today, seems dangerous.


      Not a battle I have chosen to fight as people can do whatever they want to do and I'm not prepared to to tell people to exercise and eat well.


      I'm not sure this change in our culture is something a person under 40 can relate really appreciate.

    4. richardmurray


      @Troy hmmm, well, in the history of the USA I argue fat celebration is not common within the indigenous, black descended of enslaved, or white descended of slavers communities. The oldest three communities in the USA. whites suggested the large black mammy warranted celebration or acceptance <ala the black mammy in birth of a nation whipping black union soldiers with a broom> but that wasn't the opinion of blacks themselves. And if you ever see photos of said three communities in the past, being obese or fat wasn't nearly common. Only rich people were fat. I think fat acceptance or fat celebration in the USA are both creations of the 1900s USA, when the USA's wealth and consumption based culture started by the firms took hold. So, is it new? not in my opinion. Not from a larger historical view, in my opinion. Is it standardized in modernity? I think yes. 


      Communally accepted obesity from before the time of the USA, in Europe for example, was heavily accepted in the arts through european opera. 


      Yes, it is healthwise always unadvisable to suffer consumption. We forget greed or consumption as words originally referred to unwise intake. 


      Well, I think your position is in line with the cultural trend that has brewed in the USA since its inception, which is individual accountability. The problem with individual accountability when communities/races/groups battle is individual's problems do not reside solely onto their own actions; they reside with the friction between races. But in modern USA, the personal accountability that was in terms of financial or legal or governmental scenarios dysfunctional or misplaced has true presence in modern USA. In modern USA the hierarchy of races/groups/communities still exist. but, through a complex set of historical reasons, individual accountability is not merely a false strategy that is conveniently uttered as in the past, it is a functional reality. In modern USA, if you are black, you have the individual ability to do. If you are a woman, you have the individual ability to do. If you are indigenous, you have the individual ability to do. IF you are online , you have the individual ability to collate honest news sources. If you are an artist, you have the individual ability to sell and financially profit off your work. If you have any health condition, you have the individual ability to learn and manage your health. 

      Is anything easy? no. Is anything fair? no. Are some things hurdles beyond your control ? yes. But in the usa, while bias will always exists like throughout all humanity. The reduction of communalism/tribalism/collectivism and the adherence to a mass accepted individualism has occurred in the USA. 

      Sequentially, your desire not to tell others what to do is part of that mantra, that way of life that more people in the USA adhere to. 

      And many more people under 40 comprehend this than you think. I am sure of it. 

      I will end with a strategic point. The great dysfunction in personal accountability was and always will be the reality that communal/racial/tribal disparities will always influence the lives of individuals of the single person and thus, a person can never be totally accountable for the various negative or positive factors in their life. But, how does a populace that in majority accepts and allows for personal accountability handle when a person isn't? 

  4. now0.png

    In one article, the author suggest Hollywood is broken up into parts, a white hollywood side unspoken hollywoods, while also suggesting hollywood is aracial, which means the owners are blocking an inherent universality in hollywood. He suggest Mary Alice isn't a household name, but then states she was a household name in black households... what are the points I am getting at? First, this article doesn't honor Mary Alice enough. It focuses on her work in one show, but doesn't refer to her work in los angeles for an august wilson play. I think fences. Honor artist by referring to their work. Second, for someone who loves to learn about race teaching, the opinion author forgets that opportunity in fiscal capitalism has one source, owner. Opportunity in fiscal capitalism is never about merit. It is about the owner. Who the owner wants to help. I repeat, who the owner wants to help. ... the author's point is Mary Alice was denied the career she should had by the mismanagement of fiscal capitalism in the film /television industry in the USA. Meaning what? The owners of film studios side tv stations <and later streaming/cable or other> should give opportunity based on the content of character, not the color of skin. But, If I own a film studio and I have all the films I want to produce in the fiscal year in preproduction except one. Do I give the one slot, the directors chair, to my son who didn't graduate high school, has no experience in the industry or do I give it to a graduate of howard who won awards from spike lee+ oprah winfrey + robert townsend+ in Nollywood? I will give it to my son. why? I am a racist. My bloodline is important to me over those who are not. Sequentially, i Have a negative bias towards my clan. Penultimate from the conclusion, I use the third point, ownership is the key to opportunity in fiscal capitalism. The owner can choose to give opportunity on some scale of merit. But the owner is not obliged to. You own so that you control what you do, and you can never be wrong. You may lose money. You may be cruel or mean spirited. But you are not wrong because you are the owner. Mary Alice was failed by impotency in Black Hollywood not White Hollywoods opportunity to white thespians OR impotency of Black producers in Hollywood to provide support to Black thespians, not White producers in Hollywoods support of White thespians. I can say more but I will agress




    Nichelle Nichols side Bill Russell







    The NBA is white owned. The NBA didn't accept the HArlem Rens , who played in the now destroyed Renaissance Ballroom. They had a black owner. The Negro Leagues didn't have all black owners, but had many. The American + National leagues , all with white owners could join but couldn't join with Black owners. 

    Ownership matters. Black people keep suggesting a white man has to look out for non white people in the ownership position. No a white man doesnn't

    1. richardmurray



      After reading the article below, two points come to mind. First, the court cases that the supreme court is receiving concerning affirmative action are not about Blacks, or Blacks of Africa, it is about Asians, whether White asians or Black Asians, though mostly White asians. 

      Second, the firms argument is the legitimacy <yes the word legitimacy was used> of modernity or the future requires universities to push a multiracial student body. The firms don't say the best always come from the schools, but the best need to come from those schools to go to them. 

      What is the firms point? Firms in the USA have restrictive hiring practices. Built over time, advertised as based on merit. The firms hiring practices are based on universities matriculations. But, universities absent affirmative action will make it costlier for those not white and thus the firms, especially tech firms, links into asia will eventually be thin. 

      What is the argument against affirmative action, in my opinion, not their legal teams words? 

      The argument against is that affirmative action has been used by asian students to get an unfair advantage when most of those asians are not american citizens, or are not in a community that is financially disadvantaged, ala like Native Americans or Blacks.  So USA universities are using affirmative action to gain an international alumni for their favor. Blocking people in the USA who are not more advantaged. To be blunt, in a world with Crazy rich asians, China/Japan/South Korea/India all the top of the list of countries not USA/Western Europe/Russia, the asian community is not disadvantaged. 


      Apple, GE, other major US companies ask Supreme Court to uphold affirmative action
      The companies said race needs to be considered to help build diverse workforces.

      ByDevin Dwyer
      August 01, 2022, 9:20 AM

      More than 80 major American companies that employ tens of thousands of U.S. workers are asking the Supreme Court to uphold the use of race as a factor in college admissions, calling affirmative action critical to building diverse workforces and, in turn, growing profits.

      The businesses -- some of the most high-profile and successful in the U.S. economy -- outlined their position in legal briefs filed Monday ahead of oral arguments this fall in a pair of cases expected to determine the future of the race-based policy.

      The companies told the court they rely on universities to cultivate racially diverse student bodies which in turn yield pools of diverse, highly educated job candidates that can meet their business and customer needs.
      "The government's interest in promoting student-body diversity on university campuses remains compelling from a business perspective," the companies wrote in an amicus, or friend-of-the-court, brief. "The interest in promoting student-body diversity at America's universities has, if anything, grown in importance."

      Among the signatories are American Express, United and American Airlines, Apple, Intel, Bayer, General Electric, Kraft Heinz, Microsoft, Verizon, Procter & Gamble and Starbucks.

      Citing data and research on a rapidly diversifying America, the companies said race-based diversity initiatives are about more than what many call a moral imperative and critical to their bottom lines.

      "Prohibiting universities nationwide from considering race among other factors in composing student bodies would undermine businesses' efforts to build diverse workforces," they said.

      Eight of the top U.S. science and technology companies, including DuPont and Gilead Sciences, filed a separate brief stressing their view on the importance of racially diverse campuses for cultivating the best future innovators.

      "If universities are not educating a diverse student body, then they are not educating many of the best," they wrote, urging the court not to strike down affirmative action. "Today's markets require capitalizing on the racial and other diversity among us … Those efforts, in turn, contribute to the broader health of our nation's economy."

      In a series of decisions beginning in 1978, the high court has found that race can be used as one factor among many when considering college admissions applications but that a school cannot use quotas or mathematical formulas to diversify a class.

      "In order to cultivate a set of leaders with legitimacy in the eyes of the citizenry, it is necessary that the path to leadership be visibly open to talented and qualified individuals of every race and ethnicity," Justice Sandra Day O'Connor wrote in her 2003 opinion in Grutter v. Bollinger.

      A conservative student group challenging the use of race as a factor in undergraduate admissions at Harvard University, the nation's oldest private college, and the University of North Carolina, the nation's oldest public state university, is asking the court to overturn that precedent.

      The group, Students for Fair Admissions, alleges that Asian-American applicants have been illegally targeted by Harvard and rejected at a disproportionately higher rate in violation of Supreme Court precedent and the students' constitutional rights.

      Two lower federal courts have rejected those claims.

      That the Supreme Court has agreed to hear the cases is widely seen as an indication that the justices could be willing to revisit their precedents on affirmative action and end the use of racial classifications in admissions altogether.

      It will be the first test on the issue for the court's six-to-three conservative-leaning majority, following the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy and the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, both of whom defended race-conscious admissions.



  5. now0.png

    Its funny, somewhere else in the world wide web some one referred to Yetide Badaki , who portrayed an interpretation of Yemanja in the show "American Gods", who said she wants to play Storm of the X-Men. 

    BUT, circa 2015,. a Black woman named Maya Glick < https://aalbc.com/tc/blogs/entry/92-story-collections/?tab=comments#comment-61 > ustilized Kick starter to make her own successful Storm inspired independent film


    Now, if the Black community in the USA has a member who owns the largest film studio in the USA < https://aalbc.com/tc/profile/6477-richardmurray/?status=1835&type=status > Then I don't comprehend what Badaki is waiting for. Black individuals own movie studio lots, not all used. A Black woman, who to my knowledge has made less money than Badaki, has already figured out how to finance her own short film. What is the hold up?

    As I said previously in this very community. The BlackWood always existed. The problem is, what do black individuals want from the Black film industry? Is it respecting our unique relationship to the film industry < SOUTH SIDE HOME MOVIE PROJECT >  which is part of film industry started in the late 1800s <  LINKS TO EXAMPLES OR CONTENT > ? OR do is it nothing from the Black film industry and rather participation in the White film industry commonly called Hollywood? I say some black folk want the former, others want the latter. And... that is fine. But, when Black people talk about what they want, they have no need to ask, unless they are asking whites in Hollywood, cause they can create today. 




  6. now0.png
    We're excited to share the news with you!

    South Side Home Movie Project Awarded $195,000 ACLS Sustaining Public Engagement Grant
    The South Side Home Movie Project, based at University of Chicago’s Arts + Public Life, has received an ACLS Sustaining Public Engagement Grant, as part of a $3.5 million responsive funding program made possible by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)’s Sustaining the Humanities through the American Rescue Plan (SHARP) initiative. The ACLS Sustaining Public Engagement Grants are designed to repair the damage done to publicly engaged humanities projects and programs by the social and economic disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    The South Side Home Movie Project (SSHMP) has been awarded $195,000 for the project Restoring Connections: The South Side Home Movie Project and Cultural Preservation in Chicago, which will recover vital connections to local home movie donor families through the preservation and digitization of their films, recording of their oral histories, and activation of their home movies across multiple public platforms. Additionally, it will re-engage the neighbors and partner organizations whose critical role as community archivists was abruptly halted due to the pandemic, and support students whose customized cataloging work within SSHMP was suspended. The members of the principal project team at the University of Chicago are Dr. Jacqueline Stewart, Director of SSHMP, Director (on leave) of Arts + Public Life and Professor of Cinema + Media Studies, Dr.  Adrienne Brown, Interim Director of Arts + Public Life and Associate Professor of English, Justin Williams, SSHMP Archivist and Project Manager, and Sabrina Craig, SSHMP Assistant Director of External Engagement.

    “The Covid pandemic disproportionately impacted elder Black and Brown communities, robbing us of our friends and neighbors, vital local repositories of memory and artifact. And the lockdowns and campus closures brought our critical film preservation and community-engaged research work to a standstill,” says Dr. Stewart. “Our priority now is the preservation of these fragile films and the collection of memories and descriptive data from those most impacted by the pandemic.”

    “The heart of our work is the relationships we cultivate with our film donors, their families, and our community,” says Dr. Brown. “This tremendous support from ACLS will help us reconnect in person through public programs, watch parties, oral history sessions and community cataloging workshops with the families, neighbors, students and partner organizations we’ve missed so much.”
    The South Side Home Movie Project is one of 24 grantees, representing outstanding public programs based at a variety of public and private institutions from 18 states and Puerto Rico. Awarded programs have demonstrated a deep commitment to the co-creation of knowledge with diverse communities outside of academia and promising approaches to addressing the most pressing issues our society faces today.
    “The National Endowment for the Humanities is grateful to the American Council of Learned Societies for administering American Rescue Plan funding to speed economic recovery within the higher education sector,” said NEH Chair Shelly C. Lowe (Navajo). “Our colleges and universities are important centers for public humanities, with immense potential to serve their communities through educational resources and public programs that reach broad audiences. These ARP awards will expand public access to new information and discoveries in the humanities, and foster greater collaboration between academic institutions and community partners.”
    “ACLS is proud to support these outstanding examples of publicly engaged, community-centered scholarship,” said ACLS President Joy Connolly. “Direct engagement with communities beyond the walls of academia is essential to the continued creation of knowledge for the public good. At the same time, these programs will help in expanding our definitions of humanistic scholarship and in contributing to solutions for a brighter future for all.”
    The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 appropriated supplemental funding to the NEH to provide emergency relief to cultural organizations and educational institutions and organizations working in the humanities that have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The Act recognizes that the humanities sector is an essential component of economic and civic life in the United States.

    #SHARP #NEHRecovery
    Thoughts to Black Cinema in the USA, aka The BlackWood
  7. Carib Gold, The supposed last race film. I will define a Race film as a film financed by Blacks in the USA for the Black Audience and not considering the non Black audience.  The first supposed race films are "The Colored American Winning His Suit"1916 + "The Realization OF a Negro's Ambition" 1916 . Oscar Michaeux's first film was the Homesteader 1919. If you consider a race film as any film produced by Black people for Black people then, Ousmane Sembene's work and the work of many Black filmmakers in humanity in every continent have extended the timeline of race films to tomorrow.



    A Blackwood in the usa


    Support for the blackwood concept


    Black Tribes in the USA booklist


    Oscar Michaeux



    MOVIES THAT MOVE WE with Nike Ma and Nicole Decandas , discuss Alien vs Predaotr

    My thoughts with time indexes as I listened


    circa 3:47
    Its funny, Black people in terms of film have an interesting relationship with the room in the house of fantasy called science fiction.
    When I think of Body and Soul, Sankofa, Daughters of the Dust, black people are more interested in dream fiction, which is in fantasy, more than science fiction.


    circa 4:06
    As I ponder Nichelle Nichols I realize in cheap retrospect what many Black people see, what MArtin Luther King jr. saw, and what I don't like. 
    Nichelle Nichols in star trek, the original series, is interesting cause she is so lauded by Black people, including me, yet the production is in many ways something between anti-black or not pro black.
    To be blunt, Black people in the USA love Nichelle Nichols as Uhura because as a thespian or the character itself, she represents what they want. The Black Individual in the USA doesn't need or exclusively want a star ship designed by black people, populaced by black officers, in Black interstellar law enforcement agency or governmental union. 
    The Black people in the USA are content with Black people living happy, or respected aside non Blacks in a ship not designed by blacks, in a ship mostly populated by non blacks, in a non black interstellar organization or law enforcment organization. 
    It is not that Black people in the USA do not want the black designed ship, with the black crew , with the black interstellar organization, but they are content to live as individuals without it, hoping or knowing it will happen one day. 
    I don't like that, but that is the potency of Nichelle Nichols as Uhura


    circa 4:32
    The terms science fiction or fantasy have commonly accepted definitions but are in no way bounded to the common definitions. 
    I define for this section fantasy as any film that involves the unreal, so aliens/monsters/psycopaths any unreal character, including faux biographcal characters is fantasy. 
    Musicals I define as films where exhibitions of songs are inacted by thespians in the film on more than one occasion, thus seven brides for seven brothers <which I never saw, but I recall the title>, Purple Rain, west side story are musicals. The fifth element, footloose, the color purple, ray are not musicals based on my definition.
    I will not speak for Nike, but when I say major production in USA cinema, I refer to volume of money spent on the film. Blackwood, Black financed cinema in the usa, is historically in comparison to Hollywood,white financed cinema in the USA, lower budget. But I do not concur with comparing Black cinema to white cinema financially in the usa. The distinction of Black cinema in the usa is it is historically with the leanest finances, thus expensive fantastic productions are not possible. Thus why Dream Fiction is so popular in Black Cinema: Body and Soul, Sankofa, Daughters of the Dust, Ceddo , Emitai
    In the USA no high budget Hollywood film involving what is commonly called science fiction had a black female lead before sanaa lathan. Dionna Ross was in a high budget film , but the WIZ is commonly considered a musical or fantasy film, not science fiction, in the USA.
    Oddly enough, the journey of Dorothy is a dream journey which is historically interesting with the prevalence of dream fiction in Black cinema.


    circa 5:38 
    Nicole asked a historical question. She asked, I paraphrase her, Black people are usually cast in Hollywood, note I define hollywood as white financed cinema in the USA, in dramatic or comedy roles but to what extent are Black thespians comfortable or the Black audience comfortable with Science fiction? 
    I recall Eddie Murphy saying he turned down who framed roger rabbit based on the screenplay he received or pitch he got, and he didn't buy it. The white actor, bob hoskins, who played the role Murphy let go ,oddly enough to my themes, was in a movie in 1986 called Mona Lisa, which is a dream fiction film. 
    So Eddie Murphy's admitted career choices show Black thespians have doubts. I add, Denzel Washington turned down Seven, which Morgan Freeman did. Sequentially, "the nutty professor" or "doctor dolittle" from Murphy or "the little things" from Washington. 
    In defense to Murphy or Denzel, I read screenplays. And if you ever read the original screenplay of 1986 legend, by Hjortsberg  ,  you will realize how what thespians are originally pitched can be far away from what is finally produced. 
    Now, why does that matter? To Nicole's point, Black Thespians based on the two examples I gave maintain the Black labor mentality in the USA. The Black labor mentality is based on the fact that Black people rarely are the owners, thus our employment is never secure and must be merited. Sequentially, as a thespian, mistakes are costly in a career. Sequentially, Black Thespians don't take the risks that early scripts present themselves to be.
    As for the Black audience, the Black audience was always ready, but only recently had the money.


    circa 6:51
    Nike spoke on Black Panther and how a question existed in media. The question was: if people, I will define people as ticket buyers to films, was ready for an all black cast superhero film, I define ready as willing to buy tickets? 
    The reality is , consumers are always artistically ready, but not always financially able. I restate, Black people always wanted to see Black people in everything. But Black people didn't have the money, nor did the non black ticket buyers show the willingness to buy a ticket for an all black high budget film in the past. 
    But past the year 2020 when Blacks in: Africa,Europe, the Americas, Asia are all financially potent, let alone capable, they have the money to buy the tickets. 
    And, non Black ticket buyers past the year 2020 are willing to buy an all Black cast. 


    Circa 7:52
    Nike states Hollywood, I defined it earlier, does not feel non blacks are willing to pay a ticket to see Black leads today. I concur. But I will say in the fantasy film realm, especially, that some Black creators haven't helped. 
    From Poitier in the film "The Longships" <oh the Black Moor:) forgive me> to  Sayles, a white director, "Brother from another planet" starring Jellyroll Morton to Wesley SNipes as Blade, Black thespians have taken fantasy roles seriously.
    But from "Cleopatra Jones" to "The Adventures of Pluto Nash" to "Fat Albert" to "MEtero Man" Black creators or thespians have played fantasy roles in a comedic way that hurts the role. 
    To be blunt, fantasy can easily become comedy, as it is easy to laugh at the unreal. To many examples of Black thespians making a fantasy role comedic exists. 
    And that is why Sanaa LAthan's heroine in Alien vs PRedator is a great role. She is Black, she is a woman, the film is a hollywood high budget, but she isn't comedic. While she still offers the full range of emotions through the character's scenes, from funny, to sexy, to brave, to afraid, to legendary.


    circa 8:42 
    Nicole makes the point, I restate her, Black money has finally reached a point where it can influence larger fields in the film universe.
    The 1970s Hollywood films involving or starring Black thespians, commonly called Blaxploitation, was reflected on greater Black revenue in theaters as well as white ticket buyers willingness to buy said hollywood films with black thespians. How many white women know the Shaft song? 


    circa 10:39
    They , Nike side Nicole, speak on Sanaa Lathan's preparation, and how they felt she forced some of her lines. Sanaa was inexperienced in the genre. When you look at Sigourney Weaver in Aliens as compared to Alien you see what having one of these in the belt means. But they do make a great comparison between LAthan in "Alien vs PRedator" in comparison to Angela Bassett in "What's love got to do with it". 
    My only issue is I would had compared Sanaa LAthan in "Alien Vs PRedator" to Angela BAssett in "Strange Days" . Yes, Ralph Fiennes was the lead thespian but Angela Bassett was totally convincing as the single mom black security driver who has a unrequited love to a man who earned her respect and is going through his own internal chaos while los angeles is going through a potential phenotypical war, and the man in question happens to be white.
    I argue it will be nice to see if Angela BAssett was called for Alien vs PRedator and did any casting tests.


    circa 12:10 
    Nicole side Nike go over Sanaa Lathan in films like "Disappearing Acts" or "Brown Sugar"


    circa 12:25
    Everyone wish Nicole Decandis a happy BESOONED BIRTHDAY!!! seven days from the time of this post


    circa 13:31 
    They talked about the Alien or PRedator franchise and whether the story for Alien vs PRedator helped Sanna LAthan. 
    I saw all the Predator films or the ALien films 1 to 3 before this film. 
    It is a standalone, it refers to either film franchises but doesn't own either. It is standalone and even alludes, in location,  to the legendary story "who goes there" more commonly known in the film world as the "the thing from another world" or "the thing"


    circa 15:52
    I want to merely repeat what Nike stated about a film I will not type out in name, but say it is the supposed sequel to Alien vs PRedator. 
    It didn't need to happen. 
    Those who know about an annihilation, that is a clue , know what I am talking about. How can all that is good be killed in a sequel?  It makes wrath of khan look magical.


    circa 16:04
    I don't rate or star films, enjoy Nike or Nicole's rating.
    My review is, if you are looking for a fun action film ride, Alien vs Predator is a fun ride. If you are a hardcore


    Alien or PRedator fan that wants the details followed, this movie isn't for you. 



    MOVIES THAT MOVE WE- aalbc search

    1. richardmurray



      After Reading your reply, my first thought was, what does it take to have a film environment. 

      you said Black people were not on many screens in sci fi films or films in general. That is true, but it means you need a place to show films.

      you said Black people didn't run film studioes or have financing to make equal budget films. That is true, but how cheap can one make a film.

      You said you don't comprehend expecting a blackwood. But was a Blackwood impossible before modernity, meaning the last forty years.

      Now you say, the internet provides possibilities. And I concur, but does that mean a Blackwood was impossible in the past. 

      Now you say you want to enjoy a science fiction film first and be happy for who participates in it second. I am 100% certain most black people, over 90%, in the usa and definitely in the white countries in humanity, USA/UK/France/Brasil et cetera, concur to you. 

      And yes, Nollywood exists today, though they don't make blunt science fiction films. Many people in the usa consider Daughters of the dust a science fiction film so the artistic debate I will leave alone. 

      But, was it possible to have black financed/directed/produced/acted, ala a Black Wood?

      Now, body and SOul by Micheaux to Meteor Man from townsend prove, Black people did make movies from the silent to today, with financial or quality standards that are on par to what audiences may have expected.

      But, if the BlackWood was created, how could it be?

      The questions are: 

      Where to show the films?

      Who to make the films? 

      Who to finance the films? 

      How to distribute the films?


      My quickest answers, 

      Where to show the films?

      From the 1970s to the end of the war between the states, the most prolific places in the black community, that black people had control over was black churches. Black churches are the theaters. Take a wall, color it white, project on it. If someone has a white curtain use that. Now the white law will definitely find the act of a church theater fiscally improper, so show the films for free, people need popcorn, water, vending is the roots of retail. A person with a little cart is as ancient as the pyramids. Nothing bars the church from having a small set of vendors outside. The vendors are free to donate to the church some of their revenue.

      Who to make the films? 

      I think many Black people made films, but it was common Black folk, not the OScar Micheaux's or Robert Townsends of the world. And, if you have a video recorder, then you have all it takes to make a film, starting with yourself. animation is not new, I know for certain black people near 100 years old recall seeing animation as a child in NYC alone so I know it isn't fantastical. Common Black folk made films. Maybe not close encounters of the third kind in production level, but artistic display isn't about competition it is about creation. if you don't create it doesn't exists.

      Who to finance the films? 

      Black businesses are not new. The Black people who financed MLK jr, the Nation of Islam, Madame CJ Walker has her old house upstate new york. Somebody black had enough money to make a small production film, every year since circa 1865.  Now again, do they have hollywood money? no. But is the goal a blackwood or the goal competition with hollywood. 

      How to distribute the films?

      Oscar Michaeux's films were all found in Europe , not the usa. so somebody copied them and I think oscar micheaux knew who. so, I can't believe later, the ability to copy a film and send to the churches was beyond the means for the Black community in the USA.


      Thus, in my view, a Blackwood should had existed already in the USA from the Black community in it. Now some caveats. yes, the Black community in the USA from the Negro leagues to my potential Blackwood are more interested in Black people aside whites than Black people alone. But, I think Black churches, showing films by Black people, spending money to make copies based on word of mouth, with small revenues was sustainable. I didn't even add historical Black colleges for the southern Black populace, which is historically or modernly the largest in the USA per a region. I can't deny many Black people wouldn't care, or would snub. But I think the model was sustainable... if attempted. 


      South side home movies project 



      Comment about making a Black Wood source


    2. richardmurray
    3. richardmurray


      Supporting the point , above,below shows a section of a screenshot at the website linked below. the south side of chicago has 215 surviving films. I can't imagine other Black communities were less involved. Thus, from new york city to los angeles, i say thousands of home movies. 

      Now utilizing the system I spoke of above, a Black Wood , with Black production/direction/action is clearly feasible in the past, but it was attempted, and that lack of attempt is the lesson. 



  9. now0.jpg

    Loretta Devine, Sheryl Lee Ralph and the THR Blackfamous Roundtable – The Hollywood Reporter


    After reading the article, the argument is what in completion? ... Black thespians in the USA movie industry, titled hollywood, are revered by Black Audiences or in Black owned or mostly populated media outlets in certain roles or films , most with heavy black involvement behind the camera, while underrecognized by White audiences or in white owned or mostly populated media outlets. ... The solution in my view, is perspective. I will explain. Most people use the term bollywood to refer to the cinema of india. But I know a few indians who live in india and people who live in india relate all media by region or culture. Very few things in Entertainment in india are deemed by Indians in india as pan indian. In parallel, people or media outside India like to suggest all media in india is pan indian. Bollywood/Tollywood/Kollywood I heard of before. The following wiki displays how many more there are. < https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cinema_of_India#Cinema_by_language > .. Now what is the point? the point is, each of these woods have their own identity. It isn't Kollywood thespians are underappreciated in Bollywood. Each wood in india is its own ecosystem. yes, some thespians can go between, but it isn't usual. Now, to the USA. If you look at the Cinema of India, a highly internally multiracial county, as a good comparative to the Cinema of the USA based on quality of racial complexities from the people in their country respectively, then you see the issue is not that Black Cinema's stars are underecognized in hollywood. It is that Black CInema is not hollywood. To be clear, Blackwood needs to stand isolated from hollywood the same way the hindu and tamil speaking woods do in india. yes, most black people in the usa speak english, but the culture of black people in the usa is not that of whites. Even though many black people work hard to make it so.

    1. Show previous comments  2 more
    2. Stefan



      A couple of suggestions:

      Use the paragraph key to break up blocks of text.

      You definitely need a Copy Editor and an AP Style Book.

      Never use "etc." That tells your readers that you simply couldn't think of anymore to say in that sentence.

      Read over your work carefully before posting.

      Because you asked a question about how cheaply one could make a film and then left your readers hanging for a reply.

      The industry term is "low budget." Not cheap. 

    3. richardmurray


      @Stefan thank you for your suggestions

    4. Stefan


      Not a problem. Just contact me if you need any more pointers. If you're going to blog, shoot - be DAMN GREAT at it!

      One more tip, never use Wikipedia as a source. It's too easy and Wikipedia content can be edited and rewritten by anyone who is intent on doing so. 

      Stick with academics. Google is your friend to find websites.


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